Summertime: Spending time with grandparents

HealthLink: News You Can Use

June 21, 2018

Summertime: Spending time with grandparents

David McDonald

Summer break often finds kids with a little more time on their hands. This can be the perfect opportunity to visit with loved ones who live in a nursing home or a retirement community. If this doesn’t sound like it will be high on your child’s list of fun things to do, maybe a different perspective will help. Building that intergenerational bond really is a win-win.

Socialization

It can be easy for older adults to become isolated, which isn’t good for their emotional or physical health. Making a stop to see grandma can not only brighten her day but can also teach a child valuable lessons about love, family, respect, and the lost art of “visiting.” Making a regular habit of visiting also helps raise the comfort level for a child who might not be used to spending time with an older person.

Expanding Interests

If shared interests between your child and an older adult are not readily apparent, try building new ones. Plan a visit when there is an activity already planned. Check the activity schedule for a time when there is a visiting entertainer or something like a monthly cooking class. (Maybe they’ll make cookies or some other yummy treat to share!)

A Listening Ear

For teenagers, it can be nice to have someone around who’s ready to listen. Grandparents often have the luxury of time to simply be present with a child and not have to worry about busy schedules and tasks that demand time and attention. And for the child, there is the chance they’ll learn a life lesson, a fascinating bit of history or even a funny story about their own parent.

So as you begin planning your summer schedule, plan in some time to open a wonderful generational door that can connect young and old. If your loved one is a member of one of our communities, you can find activity schedules here or on our Facebook Events page for Lafayette residents.

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